- Says it was again informed by premier security agencies that they have found no evidence of any conspiracy
The National Security Committee (NSC) said on Friday that there was no foreign conspiracy to topple the Imran Khan-led government, according to a statement.
“The NSC discussed the telegram received from the Pakistan Embassy in Washington. Pakistan's former ambassador to the US briefed the committee on the context and content of his telegram,” a statement released after the NSC meeting said.
Chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, the meeting was attended by ministers for defence, energy, information and broadcasting, interior, finance, human rights, planning, development and special initiatives, chairman joint chiefs of staff committee, services chiefs, national security adviser and senior officers.
The NSC — the highest forum for coordination on security issues – in its statement said that it was again informed by the premier security agencies that they have found no evidence of any conspiracy. The NSC added that it concluded that "there has been no foreign conspiracy".
The development comes after repeated claims by former prime minister Imran Khan who has blamed a West-led conspiracy for the no-confidence motion against him. He also flashed a "letter" during a rally on March 27, which he said was proof of the threat made to his government,
He said the “threat letter” carried details of the ambassador's meeting with Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Affairs Donald Lu in which the latter allegedly threatened Pakistan.
Washington has denied the charge on multiple occasions.
Meanwhile, talking to the media regarding the NSC meeting, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah said participants discussed minutes of the previous NSC meeting and took a briefing from the concerned diplomat on the cipher.
"After a detailed discussion, a comprehensive press release has been issued and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has directed government officials to not discuss it further," he said.
“[...] The statement, however, clarifies that there was no conspiracy against Imran Khan,” the interior minister said.
According to Khan, however, Ambassador Majeed, in the cable, reportedly said Lu warned his continuation as the prime minister would have repercussions for bilateral relations. He claimed that the US was annoyed with his “independent foreign policy” and visit to Moscow.
Khan and his party have also claimed that the alleged threat of his ouster in the cable and the no-confidence motion against him in the National Assembly were interconnected. He said in his speeches that the NSC had endorsed the alleged conspiracy.
In response to the evolving situation, Director-General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Babar Iftikhar held a press briefing last week, saying the word “conspiracy” was not mentioned in the communiqué issued following the NSC meeting last month.
“You can see clearly whether there's any word of conspiracy in that statement. I don't think so,” he said, adding that the demarche was issued to the United States because the language used in the “diplomatic cable” was undiplomatic that amounts to “interference” in the country’s internal matters.
Meanwhile, PTI has continued to peddle its narrative by staging rallies and protests across the country, covering Peshawar, Karachi, and Lahore.
Just on Thursday, Khan called for his supporters to wait for his call, hinting towards a march to Islamabad.